Mauzey’s Patent Model of a Solar Heater – 1880


This model was filed with the application to the U.S. Patent Office for Patent Number 227,028 issued to James P. Mauzey of Blackfoot, Montana Territory on April 27, 1880. His patent was for a new and improved solar heater. Mr. Mauzey’s design provided for a series of reflecting mirrors mounted on a rectangular frame which could be oriented so as to focus the sun’s rays upon an object to be heated. The image of the patent model shows the frame and mirrors. The frame would be oriented to point the central, oval shaped mirror directly at the sun. This mirror was shaped and oriented so as to focus the sun’s rays along a line at some distance behind the mirror frame assembly. Additional mirror elements were mounted within the frame as shown, and these too were designed to focus energy at the same distance behind the frame. The brown colored rod and material at the top of the frame modeled a curtain which could be rolled across the frame to block the mirrors as necessary for repair or adjustment. The frame assembly shown in the image was intended to be mounted on a supporting base which could be used to tilt the frame up or down to track the sun’s position in the sky. The base was in turn mounted on wheels or rollers to allow additional adjustments to track the sun. The object to be heated would be located on the base at the focal point of the mirrors. Additionally, the mirror assembly could be moved up or down relative to the base allowing for an accurate focus on the object to be heated. Diagrams showing the complete design of the heater can be found in the patent document online Research of available trade literature and other sources has not revealed any commercial use that may have made use of Mr. Mauzey’s invention. His work was mentioned by Charles H. Pope, a solar heating advocate, in his 1903 book titled Solar Heat: Its Practical Applications. However, Mr. Pope indicated no additional information on Mauzey had been found.

The patent model is constructed of tin, wood and fabric. It models the mirror assembly and curtain mechanism. Also shown are the side arms that would have attached the assembly to the supporting base.

Date Made: 1880Patent Date: 1880-04-27

Inventor: Mauzey, James P.

Location: Currently not on view

Associated Place: United States: Montana, Blackfoot

Subject: Patent Models, Heating

See more items in: Work and Industry: Mechanical and Civil Engineering, Engineering, Building, and Architecture, Energy & Power, Patent Models


Exhibition Location:

Data Source: National Museum of American History

Id Number: MC.251506Accession Number: 48890Catalog Number: 251506Patent Number: 227,028

Object Name: patent model, heater, solarObject Type: Patent Model

Physical Description: tin (overall material)Measurements: overall: 4 1/8 in x 5 1/2 in x 5 in; 10.4775 cm x 13.97 cm x 12.7 cm


Record Id: nmah_849170

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